ja·​ca·​na | \ jə-ˈkä-nə How to pronounce jacana (audio) , ˌzha-sə-ˈnaⁿ How to pronounce jacana (audio) \

Definition of jacana

: any of a family (Jacanidae) of long-legged and long-toed tropical wading birds that frequent coastal freshwater marshes and ponds

Examples of jacana in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Her favorite specimen in her studio is an African jacana that earned her the incredible distinction of third place at the 2017 World Taxidermy & Fish Carving Championships. Damona Hoffman, Washington Post, "She left her social media job to take up taxidermy. Now her work is on TV.," 19 Nov. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'jacana.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of jacana

circa 1753, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for jacana

Portuguese jaçanã, from Tupi jasanã́

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about jacana

Time Traveler for jacana

Time Traveler

The first known use of jacana was circa 1753

See more words from the same year

Statistics for jacana

Cite this Entry

“Jacana.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/jacana. Accessed 12 Jul. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on jacana

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with jacana

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about jacana

Comments on jacana

What made you want to look up jacana? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!